Soulmates (2014)

From Whatsabudget Films and Arbent Creative Media comes a story of a love so deep it can only be described as that shared between soulmates. As Carlyle tells the story of two such star-crossed lovers in this new short film, we follow the tale and see it unfold. This is the story of Julia and Monty.

Directed by: Rob Bowen
Written by: Rob Bowen
Starring: Mark Cannon, Erica Erickson, Dana Kjeldsen, Mark Lutinski

Director’s Notes

Soulmates was our first crack at a love story, but of course, I had to give the tale my usual dark streak. Playing on a Romeo & Juliet vibe, these star-crossed lovers were destined for heartache, but that still let us explore the depths and strength of their love for each other. This was quite the ambitious project, because at this time, it was the largest cast we had worked with, and the most involved script to sort out with more set changes and locations than previous scripts (with the possible exception of Beware the Masked One), so overall, getting this short shot in a single day, was challenging.

So when I laid out the shoot, I also broke it down by location and actors needed so that we could try and move the shoot along in a timely fashion, and be respectful of everyone’s schedule as possible. This meant starting the day with the two Marks at my apartment which had been transformed into a cafe for the morning. Continue reading

Waiting for the Way (2013)

In this absurd short comedy based on Beckett’s Waiting for Godot, Dalv and Ess find themselves, as they do in most incarnations, waiting. Their conversations range from flawed philosophy to ponderings that smash through the fourth wall.

Directed by: Rob Bowen
Written by: Rob Bowen
Starring: Mark Cannon & Erica Erickson

Director’s Notes

I had big expectations for this short. It was our first full on comedy that was purely about nothing more than making people laugh (unlike our promotional comedic short, Coffee & Cigarettes). Immediately, I knew I wanted a comedic vehicle for Erica and Mark to pursue. Bringing Erica back was a no-brainer after she totally killed it in Seasons Change. But this time around, I wanted something lighter for her to play with. Mark I met through auditions from our planned feature film that C&C was a promo short for, and I had the chance to see him perform on stage. He was simply amazing, and I knew that I wanted to see him get to do something a little less heavy than Kafka’s ‘The Trial’, the play I got to see him act in. So I approached them both, and being theatre folks, they were willing to take on this challenge.

For years I had known I wanted to do something based on Samuel Beckett’s ‘Waiting for Godot’, but there was one problem, I had yet to see or read the play. So adapting my own version was not something that I particularly felt inclined to tackle. But still it gnawed at me. Then one day as I found myself watching the Monty Python documentary ‘Monty Python: Almost the Truth (Lawyers Cut)’, because I love me some Python. Continue reading

Coffee & Cigarettes (2013)

A promotional short for an upcoming feature film, Coffee Cigarettes takes a look at what happens when the personal tradition of a coffee shop customer comes up against the rules of the establishment and state.

Directed by: Rob Bowen
Written by: Rob Bowen
Starring: Ittany LaShay & Rob Bowen
With: Ariel Crawford & Gary Allen

Director’s Notes

Coffee & Cigarettes is something of a unique beast, because I wrote it as a simple promotional short that we could release to generate interest in another, larger project we had planned (and still do), but it also very much stands alone as a darkly comedic look at what happens when social rules and laws come up against the personal traditions of someone who lives outside such structures. The idea and the film itself, happened very quickly, which is why I had to step in and be on camera once again. Reaching out to local talent, I connected with Ittany who so wonderfully captured the attitude and fire of the character I gave her.

As I said, the planning and putting together of this film happened quicker than usual, and thus this project was done and ready months before it would be released (so as to coincide with the launch of the crowd funding campaign). Continue reading

Seasons Change (2013)

An emotional look at one woman’s struggle with depression and the isolating cold that it brings to swallow her whole.

Directed by: Rob Bowen
Written by: Rob Bowen
Starring: Erica Erickson

You can also get the free digital download of Seasons Change here! Just click and download will begin. Then just unzip the file and enjoy!

Director’s Notes

Seasons Change was a very personal piece, and one that I only felt comfortable doing once I knew I had the right actor for it. This was the first short (and would not be the last) where I would work with Erica. I met her during auditions for a feature film project I will discuss later, but immediately knew that she was someone who I could give anything to and she would instill it with awesome! The piece was already powerful, in my mind, but to realize it and see it come to life via Erica’s performance, she really brought more to the film than I could have imagined.

There was so much heart in her delivery of the monologue, that what is heard in the film is the very first take of her going through it. I had even altered and extended the monologue a bit the day before the shoot, so it wasn’t even the version of the script she had previously worked with, but she absolutely nailed it first time in. There is a back-up second take of the monologue that has never seen the proverbial light of day, because it simply wasn’t needed. Continue reading

Beware the Masked One (2012)

It’s been thirteen years since Carol somehow survived almost drowning, and if her dreams are any indication…she is not quite out of the woods yet. With the appearance of a mysterious stranger, and her haunting dream lingering in her mind, Carol’s day is headed straight into the black!

Directed by: Rob Bowen
Written by: Rob Bowen & Russ Huard
Starring: Rachel Mather & Dan Davidson

You can also get the free digital download of BtMO here! Just click and download will begin. Then just unzip the file and enjoy!

Director’s Notes

This horror saga began so much simpler than it ended up. And I say that in a very proud and praising manner. When I first penned the short, there was always something missing. And given that it was a short, I was sort of okay with that I guess. I started pursuing it, and as I did, we had the first near flood as a result of the Waldo Canyon Fire that had taken place earlier in the summer. The creek behind our building filled with this thick, black water that I managed to capture on film. I knew immediately I wanted to use this footage for something (as at the time, I believed it was something of a rare occurrence), and I began looking at a way to tie it to the Masked One script. BOOM! Suddenly, the mythology behind the story exploded into view.

I could see the entire plot of the Masked One, a deep story that would only be highlighted and have the surface grazed in the short film, but that was unfolding in my mind as I connected the visuals of the creek to the story and myth. A rich horror saga would result, that begs me to return to it. Once I had this expanded idea and script, I started reaching out to local actors I met through Steve from Catching Up. This is where I managed to find the talented Rachel and Dan, and I brought them into the project post-haste. While planning out the project, I sat down with Russ over lunch and we discussed it at length. It was during that lunch that Russ and I came up with the final shot sequence in the film, and I was super-excited to get this project in the can! Continue reading

Catching Up (2012)

It’s been a while since Cody and Faith have seen one another, but this moment of catching up between old friends isn’t necessarily a joyous reunion. Both know what this reuniting will bring. One is ready to face it…one is not.

Every ending…is a new beginning

Directed by: Rob Bowen
Written by: Rob Bowen
Starring: Darleen M Daniels & Steve Austin

Director’s Notes

I absolutely love this film, and so feel like I have failed it completely. Given that this was only my second short film, I knew that there were still plenty of curves left for me to learn my way around, however, this one brought a powerful lesson home in the most painful of ways. While I had everything inline to make this film shine, the perfect pair of actors to give life to the layered characters in the piece, pitch perfect dialog and a slowly unfolding narrative steeped in tension and great reveals, even professional grade cameras to capture everything with, I had failed to consider and monitor the sound we were capturing with the cameras, to be able to keep that open-air hiss/hum out of the equation. Continue reading

Cashing Out (2012)

An unknown writer struggles to write the perfect piece…even if it kills him.

Directed by: Angie & Rob Bowen (credited as Persephone Pomegranate & Robert Bowen)
Written by: Rob Bowen
Starring: Rob Bowen

You can also get the free digital download of the festival cut of Cashing Out here! Just click and download will begin. Then just unzip the file and enjoy!

Director’s Notes

People talk all the time about virtual trials by fire, and I feel that the universe really wanted to drive that point home as I set out to start this new chapter of my life as an indie filmmaker. Having finally broken the cycle of unending pause I sat on, waiting for my words to make it to the screen, I set the date that we were to begin this journey. I had penned a poetic and highly personal piece to get this ball rolling, and even decided I would step in front of the camera as this was a learning experience I didn’t wish to inflict on anyone else. The day we were set to begin filming in our apartment, we were forced to evacuate due to the threat posed to the city of Manitou Springs by the spreading of the Waldo Canyon Fire. A fire that had begun earlier that day. Continue reading